STROMSBURG — Two Class C wrestlers on opposite ends of the size scale won district wrestling titles Saturday.
Doyle Trout of Centennial topped the 113-pound bracket at the C-3 District while Fillmore Central big man Zach Ekeler won the heavyweight crown.
In all a combined 13 wrestlers from those two schools and host Cross County/Osceola qualified for state Friday and Saturday at the 16-team tournament.
Centennial was fourth overall with Cross County/Osceola eighth and Fillmore Central 10th. Central City won the team championship handily.
Trout, a sophomore, ran his season mark to 38-3 with a 7-1 decision over Central Catholic Crusader Mitch Maginnis in the championship bout at 113.
Ekeler, a senior who will go to state with just one loss in 45 matches, decisioned Aaron Bisbee of Gibbon, 4-2, in the heavyweight battle for district champion bragging rights.
Centennial Bronco 120-pounder Steven Bader, a sophomore, lost a 3-1 decision for the championship to Kaleb Puncochar of Central Catholic. Bader will take a 32-8 record to state this weekend.
Another Bronco, junior Davey Payne, punched a ticket to state with a finish of third at 126. Payne (26-9) pinned Zach McNally from Doniphan-Trumbull in 3:00.
Junior Eric Oquist of CC/O (35-13) was fourth on the 145-pound bracket after falling in the consolation final to Joe Dinan of Doniphan-Trumbull by narrow decision, 4-3.
It was also fourth for Colton Kuhnel (22-14) of CC/O at 152 where Dylan Shannon of Red Cloud/Blue Hill won the match for third with a 14-3 major decision.
Two News-Times region wrestlers made the grade for state at 160, beginning with senior Grant Dawson (38-5) of CC/O who finished second ahead of Centennial junior Andrew Bader. Dawson lost the title bout by pin in 1:37 to once-beaten Jake Brown of Central City. Chris Gillming of Shelton/Kenesaw pinned Bader in 3:53 for third.
The qualifier at 170, sophomore Kelly Cliffords (21-7) of CC/O, landed fourth after dropping a 4-2 decision in the consolation final to Gibbon Buffalo Adrian Banuelos.
Two area wrestlers made the cut at 195, too.
Sophomore Trevor Adams (42-5) of Fillmore Central was second after coming up short by 4-1 decision in the title bout to Michael Duffy of Shelton-Kenesaw. Senior Lucas Gruber (31-6) from Centennial took fourth by virtue of an 8-5 loss to St. Paul Wildcat Chris Svoboda in the match for third.
Two of the region’s best met each other with third on the line at 220.
Junior Luke Studnicka (33-8) took the win for Centennial by pin in 1:39 over Fillmore Central senior Cole Curtis.
Team scores - 1. Central City 186.5, 2. Wood River 133, 3. Gibbon 123.5, 4. Centennial 115.5, 5. Shelton/Kenesaw 114.5, 6. South Central Nebraska 92.5, 7. Minden 79, 8. Cross County/Osceola 77, 9. Red Cloud/Blue Hill 74.5, 10. Fillmore Central 64, 11. Grand Island Central Catholic 62.5, 12. St. Paul 50.5, 13. Doniphan-Trumbull 37, 14. Centura 29, 15. Nebraska Christian 10, 16. Hastings St. Cecilia 4.